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Beth Marks

Buyer beware....especially of fsbo's

Buyer beware...especially of fsbo's

Now before you go jumping to the concussion that I'm just trying to get you to use a Realtor, just consider on fact alone what I'm writing about.

In BC the Real Estate profession is tightly monitored and Realtors are held to a standard bordering ridiculous on matters of disclosure -- disclosure on remuneration but more importantly disclosure on any known faults in a home they're marketing.

Transactions taking place within the fold of organized real estate also have insurance protection and an organized body (Real Estate Council of BC) to handle any grievances that may arise.

In addition, Realtors have to take identification from prospective buyers or sellers and have to report any large cash transactions or anything which raises suspicion at all to do with the transaction.

Realtors are held accountable and the profession is held accountable for all transactions using a licensed Realtor to give the security that sales are above board, clear and clean. All monies are held in trust at each stage of the transaction as well.

Shockingly private sales are held to no such standards other than the court system. A private seller does not necessarily fill out a property disclosure statement (mandatory for all Realtor sales). It is strictly buyer beware.

Yes, you can and should use a lawyer for privates sales -- but has your lawyer been to the property? Have they met the buyer or seller on the other side? Do they know if an inspection took place or if strata minutes are acceptable? Not usually.

Before becoming a Realtor I have on more than one occasion bought or sold privately. I did not know then what I know now! I fully realize that many trade in good faith. Just be very, very careful.

If I wanted to sell a grow op or launder money I sure wouldn't do it through organized Real Estate! If I wanted to hide a fault in the home, I sure wouldn't want a trained Realtor taking the listing! If I built without permits or final building inspections I sure wouldn't want that highlighted on a property disclosure statement. If I was over pricing I sure wouldn't want a Realtor aiding a buyer with comparables.

In BC sellers pay the real estate commission. Why any buyer would not use the services of a professional is a complete mystery. Savvy sellers need no convincing to use a Realtor. I challenge you to find any real estate mogul, investor or financier dealing with real estate investments and sales that doesn't use licensed Realtors.

There's a reason great Realtors are worth their weight in gold. To serve and protect. To serve and prosper. To serve and promote.
Published Monday, February 20, 2012 3:10 PM by Beth Marks

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May 10, 2015 11:08 AM

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